Onion Fritters | Pakoras

Onion fritters or pakoras or pakodas are one of the snacks that every family in the Malabar region in Kerala will make at least once in a week or whenever they have guests who show up without any notice. And this is almost a national tradition to serve during the Indian monsoon where there is never enough of onion pakoras. The worst sibling fights occur when this is served on one plate. :-)

Yesterday was a series of flop cooking starting with breakfast. I then tried doing a makeover of the breakfast for lunch but once again a flop. So I quit cooking and we were too lazy to step out. Don't ask me what I tried it is a long story and is totally worthless as I ended wasting food and burning my vessel to black.

To make things a little better, I resorted to deep frying happiness that never lets me down. It was time to make the simple and humble onion fritters for tea time which I am sure F will enjoy and I can go to sleep with a peaceful state of mind for doing at least one thing right. Not a single crumb of the onion fritters was left as they were so crispy and addictive...

However, by dinner time, we were so hungggrrrry and I had no courage to cook... With limited options to eat out here in Yanbu, it is always a tough decision to make on what to get. This time I decided to go for pizzas as it has been really long since I had one. I had ordered a medium veggie pizza, (see how I am already becoming careful of what I eat...) and ended the day with the choco lava cake.. which was F's way to make me happy... hmmm .. I could have enjoyed a beef pizza in that case right?

Anyways as promised to my friends here is the simple and easy recipe for these onion fritters. 

Onion Fritters | Pakoras

Update 8th May 2017: Recently, I tried making vada type fritters that are bigger and sturdier than these crispy pakoras. I have included some additions to the recipe method as the ingredients are almost the same except for cumin seeds.

The difference is in the consistency of the batter of dough. For the above-pictured pakoras, the batter is slightly wetter and for the below one, which I would like to call Pakoda is almost like a tight dough. Both give crispy outside and soft inside so it totally depends on how chunky you want to have it.

I thought of doing a separate post but then it is not very different from the old recipe so updating the recipe and including the steps too. 

Onion Fritters | Pakoras

I have to say that while munching on these whole onion pakoras, it reminded me of Maddur vada that I used to relish from eateries in Bangalore. I have to make them soon.

Yields just enough for two

Onion Fritters | Pakoras | Pakodas


1/2 cup chickpea flour (Besan)
1/4 cup rice flour
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon ginger powder or grated fresh ginger
a pinch of asafoetida
a pinch of baking soda
Salt to taste

1 onion thinly sliced in a crescent shape
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
a fistful of chopped coriander leaves
a sprig of curry leaves
1 tablespoon hot oil
Water as required (a few tablespoons) A tight dough that you can shape with wet hands 

Oil to fry


  1. Mix all the dry ingredients in a big bowl
  2. Toss the chopped onions with your hands to separate each ring and add them to the flour mix
  3. Combine the mixture by squeezing the onions and flour using hand and keep aside for 10 minutes. Onions will release moisture that will help to knead. 
  4. Add some oil and little water and knead it until tight and sticky (the batter should be just wet and thick enough to be able to shape and drop in the hot oil) 
    1. If you want to make small pops then add some more water and make a wet batter that doesn't hold shape but not too runny. 
  5. Heat enough oil to deep fry and keep it on the medium flame as the dough has to be cooked before getting fried
  6. Do a sample test by frying a tiny piece to determine the oil temperature and adjust the salt and spices if required 
  7. Wet your hand and use fingers to grab a little dough and shape it roughly towards flatter side and then drop into the hot oil 
  8. Fry them until done turning sides occasionally (remember, nothing is cooked prior so it has to be fried in a medium flame until it is cooked inside) Also, onions tend to cook further even when out of the oil, so keeping it too long will make it too dark and bitter. 
  9. Use a slotted spoon to collect, drain and place the fried onion fritters on a kitchen tissue
  10. Serve with a hot cup of tea
This is my way of making onion fritters. There are zillion variations with the addition of cashews, curry leaves, spinach etc. Nothing should stop you from trying this for a quick evening tea time bites...

While still here, do check my other fritter recipes:
Arugula or garden rocket fritters
Dill leaves lentil fritters
Plantain Banana fritters